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Media Releases

Treaty of Waitangi bottom line not satisfied in TPPA – union

Date of Release: 
Tuesday, October 13, 2015

The President of a leading trade union opponent of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) is warning New Zealanders that we cannot be sure whether the deal enforces protection for the Treaty of Waitangi until we’ve seen the full text.

FIRST Union stands in solidarity with E Tū

Date of Release: 
Wednesday, October 7, 2015

FIRST Union congratulates E Tū, New Zealand’s newest and largest private sector union, on its formation.

“We believe E Tū will strengthen unionisation in the private sector,” says FIRST Union General Secretary Robert Reid.

“FIRST Union was formed in 2011 after the merger between the National Distribution Union and Finsec. FIRST, with 27,000 members across the country, continues to grow despite a harsh industrial environment.”

“We look forward to working with E Tū,” says Reid.

“We offer our congratulations, solidarity and best wishes to E Tū for the future.”

Strike off as Toll Logistics agrees to meet workers’ demands

Date of Release: 
Tuesday, October 6, 2015

After workers commenced strike action at Toll Logistics this morning, the company has agreed to conclude a new collective agreement and settle outstanding legal cases, says FIRST Union organiser Jared Abbott.

Workers were prepared to strike until Christmas if necessary.

The new 3 year collective agreement includes back pay and a wage increase of 8 percent over 3 years.

FIRST Union looks forward to a productive relationship with the company going forward. 

TPPA a “betrayal” – union

Date of Release: 
Tuesday, October 6, 2015

The government has betrayed the interests of working New Zealanders by signing the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA), says FIRST Union General Secretary Robert Reid.

“The TPPA is a threat to our sovereignty.”

“Under the deal our ability to legislate in the public interest is compromised. Companies who believe their profits or market privileges are threatened can sue our government in secretive overseas tribunals,” says Reid.

Toll workers strike after underpayments and stalled wage negotiations

Date of Release: 
Monday, October 5, 2015

Over 20 striking workers from Toll Logistics in Auckland are calling on Toll Australia and owners Japan Post to immediately investigate a series of systemic breaches to their collective agreement and stalled wage negotiations that they say are giving the company a bad reputation, says FIRST Union organiser Jared Abbott.

“The workers have been negotiating with the company since May, but talks have been prolonged because Toll refuses to settle unless the union withdraws a number of proceedings it has against the company in the Employment Relations Authority.”

Bunnings workers to strike at landmark store

Date of Release: 
Saturday, October 3, 2015

After 300 Bunnings workers hit the picket line last week, workers from Bunnings New Lynn, North Shore and Glenfield will walk off the job and join community members demonstrating outside Bunning’s landmark new store in New Lynn at 11am tomorrow, says FIRST Union Retail and Finance Secretary Maxine Gay.

“Bunnings is refusing to compromise with workers. 99 percent of our members voted to reject the company’s offer, that’s a clear message that these workers want to retain a work-life balance.”

Tanker driver strike unlikely, company meets workers’ demands

Date of Release: 
Wednesday, September 30, 2015

After the prospect of a four-day tanker driver strike, Pacific Fuel Haul is backing down and has agreed to meet workers’ demands, says FIRST Union organiser Jared Abbott.

“It’s now unlikely that the planned tanker driver strike will go ahead.”

“The company has now agreed to reinstate a previously agreed offer that they had reneged on,” says Abbott.

“The offer will see tanker drivers who deliver fuel to Z and Caltex earn increases of up to 18 percent over 3 years with back pay from August 1.”

Tanker drivers planning strike, North Island fuel supply to be affected

Date of Release: 
Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Tanker drivers across the country are planning to strike after their employer, Pacific Fuel Haul, pulled out of an agreed settlement for the second time, says FIRST Union organiser Jared Abbott.

“The workers are calling on the company to make good on its word and settle the agreement.”

“Reneging once could be put down to a mistake, but reneging twice is just bad faith,” says Abbott.

“The workers have now been left with no choice. Striking is the only way the company will return to the table and make good on its promise to settle an agreement.”


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